Advocates are asking Minnesota lawmakers to quadruple what the state spends on affordable housing: 300 million in bonding every two years, plus an ongoing 130 million dollars in the state budget for workforce housing, emergency shelters and tax credits. Democratic Representative Mike Howard from Richfield says, “Without stable housing, how can our children be prepared to learn in schools? Without an adequate supply of homes, how can our businesses and communities be expected to grow and strengthen?”
In recent times affordable housing efforts have received around 100 million dollars in each two-year budget. Advocates say their request for nearly four times that amount is “the boldest agenda in state history to address Minnesota’s statewide housing crisis.”
Red Lake Homeless Shelter executive director Jordan May says he himself being homeless for about four years and “it helped me really realize how many people are actually homeless and how there’s an actual need for housing in our rural area of Greater Minnesota.” Two hundred organizations from all across Minnesota are in a coalition pushing for more state funding for affordable housing.